Leadership identified as clear nexus in drive for excellent healthcare delivery
In a drive for excellence in the healthcare delivery system, leadership has been identified as a clear nexus between a range of important outcomes within the health systems, including patient satisfaction, patient mortality, organisational financial performance, staff well-being, engagement, turnover and overall quality of care among others.
A fellow of the Nigeria Institute of Management and Chairman, Princess Medi Clinics, Dr. Emi Membere-Otaji, made this assertion during a presentation to mark the 4th quarterly training and capacity development organised by the quality and service improvement team, Military Hospital, Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Membere-Otaji, who is also the Managing Director/CEO Elshcon Group of Companies, said the challenges of healthcare organisations are too great and too many, for leadership to be left to chance or fads. According to him, with good leadership, healthcare organizations can face the future, and continually deliver and improve on high quality and compassionate care, that they are envisioned to so do, especially in these days of volatile, unstable, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment, with often unexpected turbulence and disruptions.
In a presentation titled “The drive for excellent leadership in healthcare delivery”, he noted: “Leadership is the process of influencing people and providing them an environment to achieve team or organizational goals. Leadership is a tool of managing a team, large or small, to achieve common objectives. While lots of works and books have been written on leadership, in general, not much has been done relatively, on leadership in healthcare delivery. In general, a leader manages human resources, physical and liquid assets, but in the healthcare system there are other additional scopes and twist, because care and empathy for the patients remain paramount.
“Also healthcare systems, unlike most organisations are composed of numerous professional groups, departments and specialties, with intricate non-linear interactions between them. He said it becomes a complex web with each group’s subcultures that might support, or be in conflict, with each other.”
Membere-Otaji, who was a Commissioner for Health in Rivers State, stressed that leadership at all times therefore needs to capitalise on the diversity within the organisation or system as a whole while utilising resources when designing management processes, to nurture cultures that will ensure the delivery of, continuously improving, high quality, safe and compassionate health services.
He noted that a good leadership strives to ensure direction, alignment and commitment within the team, such that there is coherence among team members in understanding and playing their different roles, consistent with the teams goals, cultures, values and strategies; integrating and aligning their efforts, with each member being committed and taking responsibility for the success of the organisation, as a whole. While many leadership models are known, only a few are well suited to the healthcare setting, to optimize management, in this highly complex environment.
Emi Membere-Otaji said to be a great leader certain personal characteristics can propel one to achieve good successes.
He added: “In summary, there is a clear nexus between leadership and a range of important outcomes, within the health systems, including patient satisfaction, patient mortality, organizational financial performance, staff well-being, engagement, turnover and overall quality of care. The challenges of healthcare organizations are too great and too many, for leadership to be left to chance or fads. With good leadership, healthcare organizations can face the future, and continually deliver and improve on high quality and compassionate care, that they are envisioned to so do, especially in these days of volatile, unstable, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environment, with often unexpected turbulence and disruptions.”
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